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King. Thus he his special nothing ever prologues.

Re-enter LAFEU, with HELENA.

Laf. Nay, come your ways.


This haste hath wings indeed.

Laf. Nay, come your ways;

This is his majesty, say your mind to him :
A traitor you do look like; but such traitors
His majesty seldom fears: I am Cressid's uncle,*
That dare leave two together: fare you well.


King. Now, fair one, does your business follow us? Hel. Ay, my good lord. Gerard de Narbon was My father; in what he did profess, well found.' King. I knew him.

Hel. The rather will I spare my praises towards him; Knowing him, is enough. On his bed of death

Many receipts he gave me; chiefly one,
Which, as the dearest issue of his practice,
And of his old experience the only darling,
He bad me store up, as a triple eye,

Safer than mine own two, more dear; I have so:
And, hearing your high majesty is touch'd
With that malignant cause wherein the honour
Of my dear father's gift stands chief in power,
I come to tender it, and my appliance,

With all bound humbleness.


We thank you, maiden;

But may not be so credulous of cure,—
When our most learned doctors leave us; and
The congregated college have concluded
That labouring art can never ransome nature
From her inaidable estate,--I say we must not
So stain our judgment, or corrupt our hope,
To prostitute our past-cure malady

To empiricks; or to dissever so,

Our great self and our credit, to esteem

A senseless help, when help past sense we deem.

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Cressid's uncle,] i. e. Pandarus. See Troilus and Cressida.
well found.] i. e. Of acknowledged excellence.

Hel. My duty then shall pay me for my pains:
I will no more enforce mine office on you;
Humbly entreating from your royal thoughts
A modest one, to bear me back again.

King. I cannot give thee less, to be call'd grateful:
Thou thought'st to help me; and such thanks I give,
As one near death to those that wish him live:
But, what at full I know, thou know'st no part;
I knowing all my peril, thou no art.

Hel. What I can do, can do no hurt to try,
Since you set up your rest' 'gainst remedy :
He that of greatest works is finisher,
Oft does them by the weakest minister:

So holy writ in babes hath judgment shown,

When judges have been babes. Great floods have flown From simple sources; and great seas have dried,

When miracles have by the greatest been denied.a

Oft expectation fails, and most oft there

Where most it promises; and oft it hits,

Where hope is coldest, and despair most sits.

King. I must not hear thee; fare thee well, kind maid;
Thy pains, not us'd, must by thyself be paid:
Proffers, not took, reap thanks for their reward.

Hel. Inspired merit so by breath is barr'd:
It is not so with him that all things knows,
As 'tis with us that square our guess by shows:
But most it is presumption in us, when

The help of heaven we count the act of men.
Dear sir, to my endeavours give consent:
Of heaven, not me, make an experiment.

I am not an impostor, that proclaim

set up your rest-] i. e. Make up your mind. It is a metaphor taken from the once fashionable game of Primero, and in its original signification means, to stand upon the cards you have in your hand.

a When miracles have by the greatest been denied.] Dr. Johnson did not see the import or connexion of this line. It certainly refers to the children of Israel passing the Red Sea, when miracles had been denied, or not harkened to by Pharaoh.-HOLT WHITE. Dr. Johnson supposed that a line had been omitted, from the subsequent time's standing without a correspondent rhyme. I believe on the contrary, that words have been inserted, and that we should read,

Oft expectation fails: and oft it hits,

Where hope is coldest, and despair most sits.

Myself against the level of mine aim ;

But know I think, and think I know most sure,
My art is not past power, nor you past cure.

King. Art thou so confident? Within what space
Hop'st thou my cure?

The greatest grace lending grace,
Ere twice the horses of the sun shall bring
Their fiery torcher his diurnal ring;

Ere twice in murk and occidental damp
Moist Hesperus hath quench'd his sleepy lamp;
Or four and twenty times the pilot's glass
Hoth told the thievish minutes how they pass;
What is infirm from your sound parts shall fly,
Health shall live free, and sickness freely die.
King. Upon thy certainty and confidence,
What dar'st thou venture?


Tax of impudence,

A strumpet's boldness, a divulged shame,—
Traduc'd by odious ballads; my maiden's name
Sear'd otherwise; nay, worst of worst extended
With vilest torture, let my life be ended.

King. Methinks, in thee some blessed spirit doth speak ;
His powerful sound, within an organ weak :
And what impossibility would slay

In common sense, sense saves another way."
Thy life is dear; for all, that life can rate
Worth name of life, in thee hath estimate ;*
Youth, beauty, wisdom, courage, virtue, all
That happiness and prime can happy call:
Thou this to hazard, needs must intimate
Skill infinite, or monstrous desperate.

b Myself against the level of mine aim;] i. e. I am not an impostor that proclaim one thing and design another, that proclaim a cure and aim at a fraud. I think what I speak.-JOHNSON.

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nay, worst of worst extended, &c.] I have adopted the emendation of Malone the old copy reads ne worse of worst," which words evidently require some correction, and that which I have chosen has the merit of being intelligible, without the aid of further comment.

d In common sense, sense saves another way.] i. e. And that which, if I trusted to my reason, I should think impossible, I yet, perceiving thee to be actuated by some blessed spirit, think thee capable of effecting.-MALONE.


in thee hath estimate ;] May be counted among the gifts enjoyed by thee. JOHNSON.

— prime-] i. e. Vigour of life.

Sweet practiser, thy physick I will try ;
That ministers thine own death, if I die.

Hel. If I break time, or flinch in property
Of what I spoke, unpitied let me die;
And well deserv'd: Not helping, death's my fee;
But, if I help, what do you promise me?

King. Make thy demand.


But will you make it even?

King. Ay, by my sceptre, and my hopes of heaven.

Hel. Then shalt thou give me, with thy kingly hand, What husband in thy power I will command:

Exempted be from me the arrogance

To choose from forth the royal blood of France;
My low and humble name to propagate
With any branch or image" of thy state:
But such a one, thy vassal, whom I know
Is free for me to ask, thee to bestow.

King. Here is my hand; the premises observ'd,
Thy will by my performance shall be serv'd;
So make the choice of thy own time; for I,
Thy resolv'd patient, on thee still rely.

More should I question thee, and more I must;
Though, more to know, could not be more to trust;
From whence thou cam'st, how tended on,—But rest
Unquestion'd welcome, and undoubted blest.-
Give me some help here, ho!—If thou proceed
As high as word, my deed shall match thy deed.

[Flourish. Exeunt.


Rousillon. A Room in the Countess's Palace.

Enter Countess and Clown.

Count. Come on, sir; I shall now put you to the height of your breeding.


in property-] Here used, with much laxity, for—in the due perform-MALONE.



branch or image-] Branch refers to the collateral descendants of the royal blood, and image to the direct and immediate line.-HENLEY.

Clo. I will show myself highly fed, and lowly taught : I know my business is but to the court.

Count. To the court! why what place make you special, when you put off that with such contempt? But to the court!

Clo. Truly, madam, if God hath lent a man any manners, he may easily put it off at court: he that cannot make a leg,' put off's cap, kiss his hand, and say nothing, has neither leg, hands, lip, nor cap; and indeed, such a fellow, to say precisely, were not for the court: but, for me, I have an answer will serve all men.

Count. Marry, that's a bountiful answer, that fits all questions.

Clo. It is like a barber's chair, that fits all buttocks; the pin-buttock, the quatch-buttock, the brawn buttock, or any buttock.

Count. Will your answer serve fit to all questions?

Clo. As fit as ten groats is for the hand of an attorney, as your French crown for your taffata punk, as Tib's rush for Tom's fore-finger, as a pancake for Shrove-Tuesday, a morris for May-day, as the nail to his hole, the cuckold to his horn, as a scolding queen to a wrangling knave, as the nun's lip to the friar's mouth; nay, as the pudding to his skin.

Count. Have you, I say, an answer of such fitness for all questions?

Clo. From below your duke, to beneath your constable, it will fit any question.

Count. It must be an answer of most monstrous size, that must fit all demands.

Clo. But a trifle neither, in good faith, if the learned

make a leg,] i. e. Make a bow.

Tib's rush for Tom's fore-finger,] Tib and Tom were usually joined, like Jack and Jill, as the common names for a low or ordinary man and woman. The rush alludes to the rush-ring, which was an ancient practice not only in England but in other countries, with such persons who meant to live together in a state of concubinage. This custom is mentioned by Breval, in his antiquities of Paris, and forbidden by Richard Moore, bishop of Salisbury, in his Constitutions, anno 1217. The practice seems to have continued to the time of Sir W. D'Avenant, who alludes to it in one of his songs. In the present passage, Tib the woman is represented as giving the ring. This is in agreement with the old custom of exchanging rings in the marriage ceremony.SIR J. HAWKINS and M. MASON.

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